Exclusive: Candlestick Beating Victim Doubts Police Will Find Attacker
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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The San Rafael man severely beaten at Candlestick Park during a preseason Oakland Raiders-San Francisco 49ers game said Friday that he does not believe San Francisco police are working aggressively to find his attacker.
The 26-year-old emergency room worker spent nearly a week hospitalized with bleeding and swelling in his brain. He is still temporarily deaf, but believes the progress of his recovery has cooled police efforts to bring his attacker to justice.
“I’m doing a lot better and I think that because of that people are just going to let it go,” he said in an exclusive interview with KCBS Radio. (Editor’s Note: Click Here To Listen To The Candlestick Beating Victim Interview)
In recounting what happened in a stadium bathroom, the man said he worried about being attacked again and asked that his identity be withheld.
“You don’t feel protected anymore. Anything can happen at any point, and that’s not how you should feel,” he said.
KCBS’ Holly Quan Reports:
Tension at the stadium the night of Aug. 25 for the 49ers and Raiders exhibition game was nothing like he’d ever seen before, the victim said.
In the 4th quarter, he got up to take his sister into the men’s bathroom because in that charged environment, she didn’t feel safe going anywhere alone.
“The last thing I remember is just somebody I guess running their mouth and I was just ignoring them like I usually do, and from there I blacked out,” he said.
Police said the man was assaulted and knocked unconscious in an upper-level restroom at the stadium sometime between 7:15 and 7:45, part of a rash of violence in and around the stadium that night which also included two shootings in the parking lot.
The man said someone who witnessed the attack was able to find his friends in the stands, who then came running and found him unconscious. They guarded him while someone else alerted security.
“People didn’t respond fast enough,” he said.
That night several other fights in the stands and parking lot were caught on amateur video. In all, there were 12 arrests for various offenses. Police tend to book just one or two people during a typical National Football League game.
The shooting victims’ injuries were non-life threatening, but the bathroom beating victim suffered severe head trauma.
“It could have gone a totally different way with the minor bleeds in my head and in my brain. If I weren’t maybe as healthy as I am, I think I could have been paralyzed or even been a vegetable, gone into a coma,” the man said.
The San Francisco Police Department has released a sketch of the suspect, described as a 225-pound Pacific Islander man, 6’3 tall in his l20s or 30s.
The beating victim insisted he did nothing to provoke his attacker.
“I think when it comes down to it, it was just bad luck on my part,” he said.
“It could have been somebody else, but I don’t think anybody else should have been at this situation,” he said.
The San Francisco Police Department has urged anyone with information about the restroom beating to call its anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or to send a tip by text message to TIP411.
(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)